European companies lack awareness of GDPR

Intrum’s latest European Payment Report finds that many companies are unaware of GDPR, a reform that comes with a hefty price tag.

The European Union’s sweeping data protection and privacy reform, the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), is causing great upheaval in some corners of the business world as companies try to come to grips what it means and how to implement it.

GDPR regulates and re-regulates the way companies handle customer data and privacy relating to EU residents. The implementation date is May 25 and companies will have to report any risk of loss of personal data, which can result in hefty fines.

GDPR unknown to more than 1 out of 4 European businesses

In the 2018 European Payment Report, Intrum asked companies in 29 European countries about their implementation of GDPR. The result shows a widespread lack of awareness of GDPR, which is a little surprising given that the law has been in the making for over a decade and has received a lot of media attention in the past year. As much as 27 percent of the report’s respondents said they had never heard of GDPR, even though the survey took place just a few months before the deadline*.

The degree of awareness varies substantially across Europe, with only two percent of Danish respondents saying they have never heard of GDPR, while 69 percent of Greek companies and 62 percent of Slovenian businesses make the same claim.

The reform does not come for free

The reform does not come for free. Intrum's European Payment Report shows that average cost for implementing the mandatory GDPR among SME:s is estimated at 8 000 Euro and for large corporations 65 000 Euro**, according to businesses surveyed in the EPR 2018.

Results from European Payment Report indicate that total cost for the implementation of GDPR in the 26 million businesses in the European Union*** will be a staggering 198 billion Euros .

In general, the GDPR reform seems to have little impact on business, as only eight percent of the polled companies said there was a positive impact and the same portion held the opposite view.

About Intrum European Payment Report 2018

The European Payment Report 2018 is based on a survey that was conducted simultaneously in 29 European countries between January 24 and March 23, 2018. In this report, Intrum gathered data from a total of 9607 companies in Europe to gain insights into the payment behavior and financial health of European businesses. The survey was conducted among persons that have identified themselves as either CFO, head of credits, business controller or similar.

* The survey was conducted between January 24 and March 23 2018.

** Average based on the 3,717 companies in the EPR 2018 that state a sum for GDPR implementation.

*** Based on data from Eurostat.